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In the gut-wrenching grip of neofascism, the virus of fear flourishes

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James Blignaut is Professor extraordinaire attached to the School of Public Leadership, Stellenbosch University and honorary research associate attached to the South African Environmental Observation Network (SAEON). The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of any of the institutions he might be associated with.

We are the real-time witnesses of the institutionalisation of neofascism, the vilest form of governance. Unlike the time of World War 2 when the West offered a haven, a beacon of hope, for many to flee from fascist regimes, there is nowhere to hide or escape to now; the neofascists are global operators.

A virus, dangerous as it is devastating to the morale of the people, is on the prowl. While Covid-19 is on the rampage causing grief in many a household, this psychological virus is far more destructive than its cruel biological counterpart: it is the virus of fear.

At blistering speed its emotion-laden spikes have reached almost every facet of society, rendering people lame and incapacitated, even the strongest among us. Under a cloud of fear and uncertainty, the world has been transformed into a surreal landscape, sci-fi style, of irrational behaviour and dictatorial rule, with scant regard for privacy and freedom, by the captains of commerce and the princes of politics. Welcome to a socio- and psychopathic-governed world, or one akin to that.

We are therefore reminded of the opening scene of the 2010 Russel Crowe movie, Robin Hood, which has the following dramatic blurb:

“In times of tyranny and injustice, when law oppresses the people, the outlaw takes his place in history. England at the turn of the 12th Century was such a time.”

Equally, the blurb to the opening scene of real life in 2021:

“In times of tyranny and injustice when law oppresses the people, the outlaw takes his place in history. South Africa and the world at the turn of the 21st Century are such a time.”

It is a time during which:

  • Those seeking prosperity are entangled in a stranglehold of debt and the merciless clutches of spiralling, compounding interest to the enrichment of the financial elite;
  • Those seeking justice find inequality, with atrocities unfathomable by the elite left unpunished, while minor crimes by the citizenry are being charged with a vengeance;
  • Those seeking truth find confusion through the meticulous and shrewd deployment of a system of technocracy, a social and governmental system influenced and controlled by experts, science and technology rendering the electorate clueless and voiceless;
  • Those seeking nourishment find food as a means of population control through disease, starvation and malnutrition;
  • Those seeking peace find the perpetuation of turmoil through the polarisation and branding of people to destroy the precious yet delicate social fabric and cohesion to divide and conquer through fragmentation and civil unrest; and
  • Those seeking liberty are the outlaws finding nothing but oppression and the annihilation of human rights and dignity through social injustice.

And thus, this is a time when the political, financial and judicial powers, the power of the media and of food production and distribution as well as that of the security complex, unite to take liberty captive and release waves of fear-induced oppression. Be that orchestrated or the natural outcome of the zeitgeist of the moment, is hard to tell. Nevertheless, subversion, one version at a time, layer upon layer, is drawing the noose of the web tighter and tighter while tormenting and suffocating people who are so ignorant, so vulnerable.

It reminds me of the smoke-filled Bulsaal (Bull Hall) at the Bloemfontein showgrounds where Jan Wilkens, the so-called Johannesburg Giant, under loud and animated encouragement, grabbed hold of an opponent in a gut-wrenching grip, forcing submission and the inevitable tap-out. Such are we, the people, trapped in the gut-wrenching grip of the neofascists lusting after our submission.

Fascism is generally defined as a political movement that embraces nationalism and the suppression of any disapproval, often overseen by an authoritarian and security- or police state-based government and dictatorial and charismatic leader.

Fascists oppose political and cultural liberalism and democracy and believe the state takes precedence over individual interests – having utter contempt for the electorate while strongly believing in a natural social hierarchy and the rule of the elites. In the fascist’s world individual interests are subordinate to the good of the nation together with severe economic and social regimentation.

Fascists thus favour centralised rule and economic self-sufficiency through state-controlled companies while embracing a particular kind of imperialism to expand their ideologies and reach through nationalised companies and cartels. Neofascism differs from the traditional variant in that the world is its oyster.

We are the real-time witnesses of the institutionalisation of neofascism, the vilest form of governance. Unlike the time of World War 2 when the West offered a haven, a beacon of hope, for many to flee from fascist regimes, there is nowhere to hide or to escape to now; the neofascists are global operators. To this end, they have resorted to an interconnected and highly organised security complex to enforce their will on the people – and they are impatiently waiting for the final tap-out.

The neofascists have little to no regard for the liberty, well-being and diversity of people. They are being propelled by their eugenic-inspired detestation of the masses – class-based apartheid and racism on a global scale. It is a textbook application of the Hegelian dialectic using organised crime to justify the security complex to intensify the stranglehold on the ignorant innocent. Take note that under the watchful eye of the tech-supported security complex the gross misconduct of the power elite goes unpunished. Beware, therefore, the virus of fear has an institutionalised prejudice against its own citizenry.

It should come as no surprise that the neofascists’ hunger for power, control and dictatorial rule is supported by, among others, imperialistic multinational, tech-based, security, logistics, energy and food and beverage companies backed by Big Pharma. Together they control the world’s food, energy and merchandise supplies and, in the process, big biz usurps local production while destroying regional supply chains and local livelihoods under the guise of efficiency and affordability.

They do so while in a race to achieve global self-sufficiency done under the pretext of ecological sustainability, emphasising the good of the globe above that of the nation and the people. Never should environmental stewardship, including rehabilitation, restoration and regeneration, on the one hand, and human life and the right to live with dignity on the other, be juxtaposed.

Before our eyes, in the light of day, power is transferred (that is, stolen) from the citizenry – in our best interest, it is said, of course – to the ruling class with the support of experts, science (so it is claimed) and cyber- and biotechnology to trace, control and subvert.

Much progress has been made during 2020 in this regard, but in the end it was merely the opening salvo of the socio- and psychopath-like neofascist rulers’ devastating yet picture-perfect coup d’état. Nobody has escaped their clutches and now like bloodthirsty vampires they instigate, seek and prey on our fear. To them, fear is both a tool to manipulate to achieve their desired outcome and a weapon to extract and enforce obedience. Fear is the means to entrench and strengthen their position.

This is achieved by having the citizenry fear each other – to fear togetherness, to fear the police-state, to fear losses in income and travel and trade opportunities, to fear possible destitution, and alas, to fear being either alive or dead. Sadly, statesmanship based on leadership, justice, kindness and respect is now an ancient artefact.

We know who and what the global leadership truly are, what their fear-induced strategy and manipulative parental-control mechanisms are, and that our liberty is their prized goal. They seek our submission.

My wish to my friends and fellow South Africans for 2021 is simple: be strong, be strengthened and do not fear. May we seek and find righteousness while facing the future respectfully and sensibly (the virus and other evils are real, after all), and may we not fall into the neofascists’ trap of fear neurosis. DM

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All Comments 9

  • What you’ve just described is exactly what has transpired in the US. By definition state taking control of private enterprise is fascism. The Democrats , fully backed by the media and social media are already shutting down any opposition . Yet they couldn’t wait to rid the country of Trump, to start enforcing their ideas. The masses are blinded by hatred of the man . Suddenly social media is stifling any voice that they wish not to hear. When people are deprived of the right to voice their opinion- no good can ever come from it. Unfortunately it is only going to get worse. Quo vadis?

    • Can we have some clarity from Eric Solomon? What are you suggesting? That we embrace Trumpism, led by the proven liar, cheat, insurrectionist and probably psychopath? Far from being blinded by hatred of the man, the masses have been blinded by his lies, conspiracy theories and his dangerous rhetoric spread at his rallies and on his Twitter account, thankfully now banned. Where do you draw the line between expressing opinions and spreading dangerous misinformation designed to brainwash ignorant people? Are you suggesting that Joe Biden and his supporters are fascists? Thankfully there are still a majority of thinking Americans and we have a chance of excising this fascist and self-serving cancer from American society.

      • Clearly you have very little understand of the situation. I don’t have any interest in getting into a discussion about this – it’s simply a waste of time . But to answer your question- yes of course the Democrats are shining examples of what fascism is all about. To jog your memory a bit- the plantation slave owners were the the Democrats. The KKK was – yes you guessed it-a movement started by the Democrats. You’ll all regret sooner rather than later what you’ve asked for . But I suggest read history if you want to avoid repeating the same mistakes .

  • Well said – thank you for laying it out so plainly. It is cliché to call what is happening all around us Orwellian, but it is also so close to Orwell’s nightmare that it is difficult to escape using the cliché. We are swamped with information, this is perhaps an aspect Orwell did not foresee – that there is simply such volume of information, most of it false to one degree or another, allied to so many laws in tortuous language, that the citizen finds himself (or herself) absolutely unable to perceive truth (to the extent it exists) and unable even to so order his (or her) affairs as to remain within the law.